Marrache bros back in custody, assets frozen

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  • For almost two weeks now Marrache & Co's Gibraltar offices have been sealed by the Police and the building described as a crime scene.
    This is all very well insofar as the criminal investigation is concerned, but for clients whose matters are not connected with the investigation, those matters have presumably not been attended to in all this time.
    As the end of the month approaches, the staff have had no notification from either the partners or the Provisional Liquidators as to whether they are to be made redundant or not and as to whether they will be paid at the end of the month or not.
    Let's hope that at some point in the not too distant future, the appropriate bodies will show some concern for the position of innocent clients and the staff.

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  • I do feel very sorry for such a great family with solid tradition and values. Wish them to be strong and do their very best to keep their dignity. No doubt that the Witch Hunt is being amplified dramatically by their local competitors whom are taking the opportunity to cash in on the misery and suffering of the Marrache's. Let's hope that the family will come out of this major setback stronger then before!

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  • I certainly don't feel sorry for them one iota. As someone who has been affected as a result of this scandal, as far as I'm concerned the Marrache brothers are currently in the best place they could possibly be at the moment - a jail cell at the police station.

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  • Any idea how much money they controlled?

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  • I would like to refer to the comment above dated 22 Feb 10 7:04pm. unfortunately (hearsay) history repeats itself.

    From the publicity and general hearsay about town in Gibraltar and generally, a possible impression which is evident is that Gibraltar Plc has obviously decided that all the Marrache Brothers are guilty.

    What has happened to the Rule of Law?

    The Brothers have not been convicted but their business is being carved up. The Chief Justice has appointed four or five of the largest law firms in Gibraltar, to in essence, share out the files of Marrache & Co legal clients.

    We all hope that these firms will share the good and the bad clients equitably? We all hope that the Honourable representatives of these legal firms will enter and diversify Marrache & Co without greed and will publically inform us how the clients have been shared out - the good profitable client and the not so good (the legally painful client).

    History will tell whether these firms are equitable and fair in this sad situation.

    It is opined that it could be argued that these brothers have been convicted before being brought before the justice system. Publicity or even hearsay shows that the evidence is overwhelming but please let’s hear their defence before destroying them!

    What if for some extraordinary event or reasonable argument they are not convicted? The Witch Hunt argument will win and it will be detrimental to Gibraltar Plc - for miss management of the affair.

    Over the last two years, Gibraltar as a financial center has been growing to be acknowledged internationally as a potential force. How Gibraltar Plc deal with this matter will dictate the future of the Plc as a financial institution.

    The newly appointed Chief Justice of Gibraltar, generally well admired by the Gibraltar legal community for his honourabilty, is an ex employee of Marrache & Co.

    If in the event that the Chief Justice ultimately hears the case and there is a conviction beyond reasonable doubt, Gibraltar Plc does not want to have arguments, publicity and even appeals with allegations of prejudice as a result of the way the case has been dealt with - simply as a result of the relationship of the Chief Justice and the Brothers.

    We all heartedly feel sorry for the family and especially the respective children.

    If you actually know the Marrache Brothers, individually they are not bad people at all. Their arrogance has become them. This arrogance and ultimate makings of grandeur has blinded them over the past years.

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  • The likely fallout from this situation is most unfair for Gibraltar who boast some superb, world class law firms such as Isola and Isola and Hassans who are as good as any of the Magic Circle firms with the highest standards of client care and integrity. Never before has a Gibraltar law firm been involved in such serious allegations let alone have partners denied bail and locked up. However solicitor fraud happens regularly in the UK. Solicitors are going down like 9-pins on our mainland.....it’s amazing what is being exposed now the tied has gone out. The Fraud Dept of the SRA has never been busier, solicitors are being struck off in England regularly and rotten firms shut down all over the UK. Most bad legal firms in England are still trading as the regulatory authorities can only follow up the most serious (or easiest?) tips, they are so hard-pressed. The legal expertise to be found in Gibraltar is exceptional and yet this Marrache matter stands to tar these superb lawyers with the smell of the gutter. In which case solicitors in England and should have the collective smell of the equivalent of a cesspit in the depths of hell simply by association with the hoards of lawyers in England currently under investigation by the SRA or already struck off, awaiting trial or already in prison. Poor little Gibraltar.....it has only six big law firms and so it only needs to happen there once and the entire place is liable to suffer by association. In fact Gibraltar professionals are amongst the best in the world, their Government is exceptional and could teach the louts at Westminster a thing or two (and I include the excellent opposition in this comment) and the people are wonderful, it is a place where Muslims, Christians, Jews, Catholics et al exist in harmony. Gibraltar could teach the world a thing or two. They have been going for a long time and in this situation one bad firm should never effect the reputation of an entire legal jurisdiction....otherwise the UK would be a total no-go area by way of comparison. For a tiny country, Gibraltar is a microcosm of what England could and should be......roll on a change of UK Government. Perhaps the Tories will stamp down hard on corruption in the UK.....regulating the City, Estate Agents, building more prisons would be a good start but even better would be tripling the SRA’s fraud department. At present, a dodgy lawyer when faced with a client complaining to the Law Society merely considers it an inconvenience and shrugs it off. They get a rap on the knuckles.....even an SRA complaint tends to end up with the name of the offending solicitor been “noted.” So what! This merely encourages terrible behaviour from rogue lawyers who are a disgrace to their profession. Gibraltar don’t mess about....unlike the SRA in the UK. One sniff and Marrache was raided, evidence seized and the firm closed down and the partners denied bail. It’s about time dodgy legal firms were dealt with quickly in the UK. With all of the extra legal business now being re-distributed amongst Gibraltar’s other law firms, hopefully those honest staff at Marrache (clearly the vast majority) can be re-employed at good, solid, honest law firms in Gibraltar. It is always a tragedy when a hard-won reputation, built up over centuries, is ruined however the reputation of Gibraltar transcends this incident and it remains a superb jurisdiction and a charming place to visit.

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  • from Gibraltar Chronicle 12th March 2009
    MARRACHE & CO RECRUIT SENIOR LAWYER
    Marrache & Co have announced that Stephen Makin has joined the firm and will work in both the Gibraltar and London offices. Mr Makin qualified as a solicitor in 1984 working in private practice specialising in commercial law. In early 1990 he joined the Norwich & Peterborough Building Society and was promoted to the role of Chief Solicitor and Head of Legal Services in 1994. In that role he was responsible for the Society’s financial services and commercial legal matters and has acquired specialist knowledge in the law relating to building societies, mort-gages, financial services, retail banking, data protection and consumer credit. He was also responsible for advising the Society in relation to the opening of what became a highly successful branch of the Society in Gibraltar and the establishment of its representative office and mortgage lending service in Spain, a first for a UK building society. Mr Makin was also a member of the Building Societies’ Association Legal Advisory Panel and the Council of Mortgage Lenders Legal Panel. Recently he has worked with the Financial Services Authority in London.
    Mr Makin is an author and editor of a number of leading legal textbooks which include “Goods Consumer Credit Law and Practice” and “Butter-worths Financial Regulation Service”.”

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  • Whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty?
    If they have done something wrong or not I do not know, what I do know is that they are making an example of them, which is wrong, especially as anybody else would have already been out on bail.
    These boy come from an outstanding and established Gibraltarian family and for their family and loved ones to be put through this is wrong.

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